Monday, October 23, 2006

List: My 100 Favorite Albums: Part 5 : 20-1

20.Songs In The Key Of Springfield -Simpsons Cast: The soundtrack album to the greatest show in the history of television. 'Flaming Moe's", the songs from "Oh, Streetcar" and "Planet Of The Apes:The Musical", "See My Vest", "Who Needs the Kwik-E-Mart?"...I could go on and on and on...There's 39 damn songs !!!My one complaint would be that I wish there was more dialogue from the show, but that's really a small complaint, I can do most of the dialogue from memory, anyway.

19.Bella Donna- Stevie Nicks: I definitely have a weakness for the Welsh Witch. I think this is a truly fantastic album. The two biggest hits, "Stop Draggin' My Heart Around" and "Edge Of Seventeen" are actually my least favorite songs on this record. The lyrics are great, the music is great, and her voice...My god, what a fantastic voice. "The kind of woman that will haunt you..."

18.Let It Bleed- Rolling Stones :"Well we all need someone we can bleed on..." What a great record, part of that magic run of Beggars Banquet, Let It Bleed,Sticky Fingers and Exile On Main Street released between 1968 and 1972, one of the most impressive runs I can think of, for sure, perhaps only matched by the early 80's run by the Thompson Twins. Great great songs, "Love In Vain", "Live With Me", the title track, "You Got The Silver"(Keith's first lead vocal on a Stone's song, which I have heard is only there because Mick's vocal was accidentally erased-I don't know if that's true, but it's a great song. "Gimme Shelter" is one of the greatest songs ever recorded. It just feels so threatening, it's creepy, but it rocks. Then there's "Midnight Rambler" and "You Can't Always Get What you Want"...A damn near perfect album.

17.Europe '72- Grateful Dead: Recorded(duh) on their European tour in 1972, this album represents the recorded debut of several of the Dead's enduring tunes(and my faves), "Brown-Eyed Women", "He's Gone", "Ramble On Rose","Tennessee Jed" and "Jack Straw"...Also has a great version of "Morning Dew" and "Truckin"
Some good jams with "Epilogue" and Prologue" too. a great, great record."Like a steam locomotive, rolling down the track, he's gone, he's gone, and nothing's gonna bring him back."

16.The Final Cut- Pink Floyd: Far and away the best Floyd album. Depressing as all hell. Shit, it ends on a nuclear blast, but a great, great piece of art. " The Gunner's Dream", "Not Now John", "Two Suns In The Sunset" and the title track, in which the "Final Cut" means a suicide that the singer did not have the nerve to go through with. Cheery stuff, huh ?

15.Pinkerton- Weezer: Iknoww that a lot of people(including some, if not all of the band themselves) hate this record. I love it. Sure, the lyrics are a bit creepy at times.But it's a brilliantly put together record. I can listen to it over and over again. "Across The Sea" is a great, if creepy tune about an obsessive fan/rock star obsessed with said fan. "Pinktrianglel" about a man in love with a lesbian, which has one of my all time favorite lines in it: "If everyone's a little queer, can't she be a little straight ?" Genius.

14.Grateful Dead(Skullfuck)-Grateful Dead: Another live GD album. To quote Gilbert Gottfried as the parrot in Aladdin: "Let me have a heart attack and die of not surprise!" Another one that has a couple of tunes that made their recorded debuts: "Bertha", and "Wharf Rat".Two of their best, actually.It also has a great "Playin' In The Band" and "That's It For The Other One".

13.King Of America- The Costello Show(Featuring Elvis Costello): Elvis' greatest moment, if you ask me. "Brilliant Mistake""Little Palaces", "Suit Of Lights". Some of his best lyrics, and some great acoustic guitar playing. I love this record.

12.Sticky Fingers- Rolling Stones : The Stones Again. This one has some of my very favorite songs on it. "Moonlight Mile","Wils Horses", "Can't You Hear Me Knocking?", "Dead Flowers" and oooh, "Sway".It also has "Brown Sugar", which is not a song I love, but I saw the Stones at the Hoosier Dome in Indianapolis in 1989, and after the show, whilst we were all walking to our cars, this dude just starts calling out"I said yeah, yeah, yeah...' And the whole throng of people walking along the street all scream "Whooo". Good Times.

11.Live Rust- Neil Young: My intro to Neil Young. A great live record. Part acoustic, part electric. "Sugar Mountain" "Comes A Time" "After The Gold Rush", and then the electric stuff,"Cortez The Killer"-GREAT guitar work, "Powderfinger", "Like A Hurricane". Neil can rock out with the best of them. Really underrated guitarist,and it's showcased on this record.

10.Workingman's Dead- Grateful Dead: "Please don't dominate the rap, Jack,if you got nothing new to say." This is their most country flavored album with "Cumberland Blues" and "Dire Wolf". It also has "Easy Wind"- a great PigPen song, and "New Speedway Boogie", the Dead's reaction to Altamont.

9.Trace- Son Volt: I have said it before and I will say it again, this is the greatest album produced by anyone involved with Uncle Tupelo.(Sorry, Wilco). Great lyrics, great music, throw in a Ron Wood cover, and you have a near perfect album. In fact, I think it might be perfect.

8.Blood On The Tracks- Bob Dylan: Dylan's greatest moment. "Tangled Up In Blue", "Simple Twist of Fate", "Shelter From The Storm", and "Idiot Wind",which ranks right up there with "Positively 4th Street" as the two greatest kiss off songs, EVER.

7.From The Mars Hotel- Grateful Dead: Should I even bother ? "Ship of Fools", "U.S. Blues", "Unbroken Chain"(Phil tune) and "Scarlet Begonias", which contains the oft quoted line:"Once in awhile you get shown the light/In the strangest of places if you look at it right." Amen.

6.Late For The Sky- Jackson Browne: Jackson's best album. "They were cutting from stone some dreams of their own, but they listened to mine anyway/I'm not sure what I'm trying to say" Thoughtful, beautiful songs. Apocalyptic visions. Death, love, hopeIt's's all there. He's a brilliant lyricist. Horribly underrated.

5.London Calling- The Clash: Certainly the greatest punk album ever recorded. But there are those labels again. This record is so much more than that.I don't know that two of the songs sound even remotely alike. That's pretty impressive. The cover is a great riff on an old Elvis album cover. The title track leads off the record with a boom, and it never really looks back. A song about Montgomery Clift ? It's on there. Drugs ?Politics? Fascism? Card cheats ? ...It's all there.It even has the great "Train In Vain" as perhaps the first ever "hidden cut".

4.Revolver- The Beatles : The Beatles finest moment. Don't even mention Sgt. Pepper's, the most overrated album in the history of music. Revolver kicks it's ass, feeds it dirt, and sends it home crying. It has the Beatles greatest song"I'm Only Sleeping". It has Ringo's shining moment, "Yellow Submarine". "Eleanor Rigby", George's "Taxman", "Here, There, and Everywhere", "For No One", "Tomorrow Never Knows". This is their best moment, period.

3.Darkness On The Edge Of Town- Bruce Springsteen: BROOOOOOCE !!!! man, this album can be a bummer, but it kicks ass. This is the record that emerged from his two or so years of legal trouble with his first manager. It sometimes feels like the optimism of "Born To Run" was beaten out of him, but the songwriting is better.The title track is one of his best songs, as are "Racing In The street", "Badlands", "The Promised Land", "Candy's Room", "Prove It All Night"...I read an interview with Bruce where he said something along the lines of "Darkness" being the point he he figured out what he wanted to write about. Think about this, two of the songs that didn't make it onto this album were "Because The Night" which became a hit for the Patti Smith Group, and "Fire", which became a big hit for the Pointer Sisters.

2.Exile On Main Street- Rolling Stones: I think I wrote about this somewhere else on the blog, but I cannot find it. I remember reading about this album, and someone saying "You can feel the humidity" on it. Amen to that. This album is greasy and slimy and sweaty and sexy and I love every minute of it. "Tumbling Dice" is one of their finest moments, but it doesn't stop there. 'Sweet Virginia", Keith singing "Happy", "Let It Loose","Rocks Off", "Torn And Frayed". And, two unheralded gems, two of my very favorite Stones songs, "Shine A Light" and "Loving Cup".

1.American Beauty- Grateful Dead: Perhaps, a perfect album. even "Truckin'", and overplayed tune, is fantastic, and has one of my favorite lyrics in it:" Sitting and staring out the hotel window/Got a tip they're gonna kick the door in again/I'd like to get some sleep before I travel/ But if you got a warrant, I guess you're gonna come in". From start to finish, this album is glorious. As I have stated many times before, "Box Of Rain" is my favorite song of all time. But this record also has "Friend Of The Devil", "Sugar Magnolia", "Brokedown Palace", "Candyman", PigPen's "Operator" and of course "Ripple", an absolutely beautiful little ballad. Garcia plays peddle steel on this album, there's some mandolin thrown in there. The lyrics are fantastic! I will stop prattling on, but I think you get the idea.

Well, there you have it. My 100 Favorite Albums.
I must admit, I was hoping to inspire some debate with this rather bloated and overblown list, but alas, it did not happen. Oh well, it was fun to write anyway.
Now, it's time to think about my favorite breakfast cereals.

Rock on, Crimestoppers.


Lauren said...

Um, I love the Blue Album more than I love Pinkerton, but I love those two albums more than anything else Weezer's done.

Pinkerton's a fantastic album, although it probably wouldn't break my top 100.

Paticus said...

So, you're mocking my list, now ? telling me that the number 15 album on my list wouldn't even MAKE your Top 100 ?
Sure, i expected spirited debate, some disagreement, maybe even some name calling...But frankly, this is too much. To quote that great Hoosier, Dan Quayle:"That was uncalled for."

Lauren said...

Obviously! taste in music is just far more refined than yours.

*resumes rocking out to Kelly Clarkson*


*jaime said...

Yay for King of America. Dear lord that's a wonderful album. "Indoor Fireworks" is one of his most perfect songs, how can you argue with a line like "You were the spice of life/the gin in my vermouth"?

Great list overall, thanks--